“Look at their shiny armour”, says Juan Manband the Inca peasant.
“And their colourful flags”, says Juanita his wife.
“What big swords they have”, says Manuelo his son.
“And even bigger beards”, simpers Manuela his misguided daughter.
Thus are Cortés and his band of Spanish mercenaries welcomed to Peru by an unsuspecting local populace back in the sixteenth century.
“Look at their smiley faces”, says Matty the darts team captain.
“And their bulging wallets”, says Ian the bar steward.
“They seem very friendly”, says Jimmy.
“This should be fun”, says Dave his misguided son.
Thus are Jeff Taylor and his Mount darts team welcomed to the Cricket Club by an unsuspecting local populace on Friday evening.
And just like Peru, it doesn’t take long for the ocheological cricketers to discover that behind the smiley faces of their guests are dark thoughts of pillage and plunder.
“That wasn’t much fun”, Misguided Dave is heard to mutter after being subjected to an exemplary exhibition of esplanadian evisceration at the hands of Andy Parry-Jones, as the Mount romp to an emphatic 8-0 victory on this, the second week of an embryonic winter campaign.
Almost matching the Mount for malevolence this week are the Lowther Lotharios as they take apart the Blasted Heathens in fine style. Al Morley is a solitary success story for the tormented Taverners, with Jeff Walkington back to his belligerent best for the cold blooded Cons. Similarly undone on Friday are the Bowling Ladies, this after the Terry Beavers inspired Bowling Boys saunter home in some style at the end of a one-sided local derby on Upper Lune Street. Carol Evans gets her birthday weekend off to a winning start by helping the lasses avoid a whitewash at the hands of the misanthropic males.
Another unbalanced coming together of near neighbours is also taking place at the Highbury Club, the highlights of a 7-1 victory for the ‘A’ team are a brace of twelve dart master classes from skipper Chris Job and debut boy Johnnie Johnstone. However, a 148 opener by Chris and a 103 finish by John can do nothing to dampen the spirits of Anthony Rhimes, this after he inflicts an early season defeat on big hitter Scott Hayton.
Elsewhere, things are a good deal tighter, nowhere more so than on Kemp Street as the Peking Ducks entertain the Collapsible Comrades. Although Alan Taylor and Tony Kane get the visitors off to the best of possible starts before long the operose orientals have levelled things through Phil Lee and top dog Peter Fogg.
A brace of Billington successes for man of the match Stan and brother Lenny see the visitors pull clear once again. However, Brian Wilson encounters a few good vibrations for the home team in the penultimate leg in reducing the deficit to 4-3. Alas, home skipper Reb Hogg who had keenly anticipated a deserved share of the spoils, can only bite his bottom lip in a manly fashion as Gaz Whitehead edges home by the narrowest of margins to secure both points for the visitors.
The Fuzzy Ducks and Beach Road Boys are engaged in an evenly matched tussle down Poulton Road. First half wins for John Godfrey, Andy Ingham and John Rowe, versus a solitary response from Harold Rees see the home side happily tucking into the egg butties at 3-1 to the good. Back bounce the visitors at the start of the second period, courtesy of man of the match Andy Johnstone, a revival that proves illusory as Graham Hopkinson and a 117 finish from Andy Gratrix sees the Strawberry safely across the winning line.
An early season triumph for the Peripatetic Pensioners in deepest Thornton this week, this after they ease past the challenge of the Royal Oak with something to spare. Martin Coleclough is best on the night for the cardiganed carousers, with Tony Brogden as happy as an adagio dancer with the ague for the debilitated Deaduns.
Finally, you can’t move for Blyths down Preston Street on Friday, as the two Dockers outfits square up to each other. One of them (crucially) is representing the ‘A’ team, whilst a further five are clogging up the ranks of the ‘B’ squad.
From the outset, Robert Dagger adopts his best Mr. Chips demeanour in explaining the finer points of ocheology to his embryonic opponent Chrissy Blyth. He is patience personified in explaining how best to utilise the Olly Croft Algebraic Theorem, (E+A)=V, which (as any fule noes) stands for Experience + Accuracy = Victory (more often than not). An outcome he is more than happy to demonstrate to young Chrissy in the opening game.
But then Elliot Lowe puts the cat amongst the pigeons by levelling things up at 1-1, this before a tense shared experience between ‘A’ team skipper Paul McCann and a crucial victory for Adam Blyth that sees the defending champs holding a narrow lead at the halfway point. Mark Smith doubles the home advantage in game five, only for Mitch Blyth to bring things back to the boil in the anti penultimate leg.
There is much relief to be observed amongst the Dockers ‘A’ contingent as next to the board Paul Connor finally secures both points for his team, especially as last man Chris Blyth is enjoying a purple patch at present, his win in the final game laudable but ultimately fruitless for the Blyth Spirits.
Thanks for reading.